Alex Poythress was the first sub off the bench for UK. It was his team-leading 23rd time being the first called upon.
Young hit a 3-pointer as the game’s first basket at the 19:01 mark of the opening stanza to extend UK’s 3-point streak to 898 consecutive games. It is the second-longest streak in the country.
John Calipari coached teams are now 129-38 in the months of March and April.
Calipari is 43-13 (.768) all-time as a coach in the NCAA Tournament. His career winning-percentage is the first among active head coaches.
Kentucky has won 11-straight NCAA Tournament games. That’s the most consecutive victories for a team in the NCAA Tournament since Florida won 12-straight en route to its national titles in 2006 and 2007.
UK has trailed by nine or more points and come back to win in each of the last three outings. The Wildcats have scored on its last possession in four-straight contests en route to the title game.
First Half Facts
Young started the game with a 3-pointer and UK raced out to the early advantage to begin the opening half. UK held a 9-7 advantage into the game’s first media timeout.
Wisconsin took its first lead of the game at the 15:00 minute mark of the half at 11-9. The Badgers used a 10-0 run to take the game’s largest lead at 17-9 with just under 13 minutes remaining following a fast-break 3-pointer.
The Badgers again an eight-point lead with 6:26 remaining before Poythress slammed down a basket to end the threat to make the score 30-24 in favor of the designated home team.
Wisconsin captured a nine-point lead at the 4:13 mark by the score of 34-25.
The Badgers made only one field goal over the final seven minutes of the half. Ten of its last 12 points to end the stanza came at the charity stripe.
Kentucky trailed by four, 40-36, at the half and is 6-8 on the year when trailing at the break, but 2-0 during postseason competition.
Second Half Facts
Wisconsin opened the half with a made 3-pointer to take a 43-36 edge.
A 9-0 run highlighted by a Johnson traditional three-point play lifted the Wildcats to their first lead, 44-43, since a 9-7 advantage in the opening half. The run extended to 15-0 following a Poythress put-back, a dunk by Lee and two free throws by Young.
The 15-0 run matched the longest of the season which UK had set twice earlier this year.
Wisconsin quickly cut UK’s eight-point advantage to two at 53-51 following an 8-2 burst, and then knotted the score on a pair of free throws the following possession.
After an Andrew Harrison drive and score, the Badgers answered with a 3-pointer to reclaim the lead at 56-55.
UK eventually tied the score at 69 apiece on a pair of Randle free throws.
After trading turnovers, Poythress’ feed from Andrew Harrison gave UK a 71-69 advantage with 2:11 remaining.
A foul on a Wisconsin 3-point attempt with 15.2 seconds remaining and under one second on the shot clock enabled the Badgers to go to the line and make two free throws for a 73-71 lead.
Mr. NCAA Clutch, Aaron Harrison, sunk his only made 3-pointer of the contest with six seconds remaining to lift UK to the 74-73 win after a last-second attempt by the Badgers rimmed out.